Archive for the ‘design’ Category
Free 2014 business card calendar art has been released for visitors to download and print on the back of their business cards. This annual giveaway has MOVED to my site dedicated to custom graphic art.
DOWNLOAD HERE: Please visit the Custom Graphic Art Design blog announcement and download link.
As in prior years, the FREE 2014 artwork download includes a variety of US Standard 3.5 x 2.0 inch business card calendars at 300 dpi resolution in CMYK designed for the back of a business card, and ready for print.
As usual, you do NOT HAVE TO REGISTER or provide an email address.
The set of 6 includes 4 designs with marble backgrounds in blue, green, grey, and pink, plus white granite and plain white.
Note: While on the custom graphic art design website, please follow the Facebook link and then “like’ that page for the latest news.
This annual giveaway is usually released in August, so if you like the Facebook page now you will know when new designs are released in 2015.
Our 2013 free business card calender art with 6 versions in high resolution jpg format ready for print are available for download. The business card size artwork is perfect for the back of your business card without paying to have artwork designed.
Previous releases to download the artwork were in a single zip folder. The 2013 free business card calendars are linked directly, so you may select just those color schemes that interest you. You do not have to register or reveal an email address.
Calendar background colors left to right: White, Marble, Granite, Pink, Green, and Blue
DOWNLOAD Instructions: Select any or all from these thumbnail swatch graphics above to view full size, or right click any to “save link as” to your computer. Want all 6 in a zipped folder?
Use this link to download all 6 card calendar designs for 2013 (zip folder, 2.9Mb).
Note that card calendar artwork is high resolution so very large, and oversized with a 1/16″ bleed on each side. This allows you to reduce the card to actual size to print at home. Likewise you may send as-is to a professional printer and the bleed allows them to overprint and trim to exact size without any loss of the background image.
Comments or questions are welcomed. If you are a first time visitor, the free business card calendars are released each year in August.
This email setup tutorial teaches small business owners how to easily create a positive first impression with GoDaddy email. Free GoDaddy email account options included with a www domain or hosting from GoDaddy include one direct email account (1Gb), plus 50-100 (100Mb) forwarding accounts.
Premium email accounts on GoDaddy for a monthly fee may be purchased by companies with larger staffs who want direct email for 10′s or 100′s of individual employees.
Solo entrepreneurs who manage email correspondence or delegate the task to 1 or 2 people do not need the premium email. The free account email options should be sufficient.
Some web design clients are more familiar with using other free email account services to send and receive messages with options like GMail, Yahoo, AOL, or Hotmail. Using those or similar free services as the email contact in your web design is a huge mistake. Here’s why.
First, this email setup tutorial references GoDaddy. Email with other domain, hosting, and paid email service providers should be just as fast and easy to set up.
To create a more positive first impression you need website email contact info that matches your www domain. Your web design is your 24/7 salesperson. The sales message (marketing) and call to action (sales) is more likely to succeed if you establish trust and credibility.
An email address to match your www domain as the contact email in your web design shows sophistication, and website visitors are more likely to buy or initiate contact if they feel comfortable trusting you.
Email Setup Tutorial Steps for GoDaddy Email
By default, using GoDaddy email from their server displays the sender as just your email address. That’s better than an address ending in Yahoo, GMail, etc. However, having your NAME as the sender plus the email address that matches your www domain is the ideal solution.
Here’s the email configuration setup tutorial in 10 easy steps that should take less than 5 minutes to complete.
- Login to your email account on the GoDaddy secureserver.net page.
- Select the menu tab Email, then Settings – Personal Settings – Identities.
- Note that the entry under the column entitled Name is blank.
- To the far right under Actions is an icon with a pencil to do edits.
- Click on that pencil icon and a popup screen appears for Modify Identity.
- Type your “from” Name in the first box with your actual name or company name.
- The second box should have your “from” email address already displayed.
- The next box may be left empty so replies return to the same email address.
- The next option is a “Default” checkbox to set this format for all email.
- Select the OK button and now emails will include your name and email address.
Look above the Name column for the button for Add Identity. You may want different names to appear depending on the type of reply being made to the inquiry. Perhaps you’re answering a sales related question and prefer to have the From address read “Sales Support”.
Select Add Identity and the same popup appears except all fields are blank. Enter the new name (ie Sales Support) in the first box, your email address in the second box, and click OK.
You now have two identities listed for sending messages or replying to incoming emails.
Compose an Email to Test Your New Email Setup
Next, compose a test email to confirm new emails will have a more professional look for a positive first impression with GoDaddy email.
While still logged in at your GoDaddy secureserver.net email, select the option for Compose under the top Email tab. The outgoing From: information will now read your name with the default email address in brackets.
However, the From: box will now have a down triangle to the right.
Select that triangle and a dropdown menu appears with a list displaying your default email address plus any additional identities you have created.
Click on the appropriate identity for your type of message being composed, and that custom From: will now appear as the sender.
Conclusion and Tutorial Download Link
This blog post has been published as a GoDaddy email setup tutorial in pdf format (74Kb, 4 Pages). Select that link to view online and then download to your computer for reference later.
As with other free downloads I offer, you do not need to register or reveal an email address to download the pdf. You’re welcome to email a copy to friends or business associates, as well.
That’s it for this tutorial for how to create a more professional and positive first impression with GoDaddy email.
Moving forward in 2012 I have decided to move this commercial website from JimDegerstrom.com, and make that a personal site as appropriate for it being just my name. In addition, I will split and transfer up to 500+ pages of content to two new websites.
My core business is custom cms web design. Custom graphic art design is secondary in revenue, and evolved as clients wanted artwork for print to match their site.
As such, the two new sites will focus on just one of the two niches.
Both new sites launched in July with a simple home page and a contact form page. They have very similar looks except each has a different color scheme.
Content to each will be moved gradually from JimDegerstrom.com as appropriate. This may take months because 500 pages are being split up and moved, yet that strategy allows the new sites to inherit search result ranking in Google. Some older or obsolete content may be deleted and marked as 410 gone meaning permanently removed.
Stay tuned. Readers may want to visit Facebook pages for each new site, too.
The catchphrase is “Add original quality content often, and get social”. This new 2012 SEO strategy for attracting traffic from Google may seem simple, yet each word in the entire phrase is important. You cannot drop words like “original” or “quality” and achieve better results than your competition if they implement the search engine optimization strategy that I advise.
My specialty is custom cms web design that allows a site owner to take over their website to manage content and add, edit, or delete material without advanced technical skills. This gives them the ability to control the growth of their website to help meet the goal behind “Add original quality content often, and get social”. The cms, or content management system, is ideal for small business owners with limited time or resources to keep their website updated.
The strategy is based on more than 15 years of web design experience, and depends on natural methods of attracting search engines. Google publishes resources to describe the type of website that will succeed. Design for visitors not search engines.
Google further warns website owners against hiring SEO experts who make outrageous claims or any promise to get your website on Google page one. If you ignore the advice in this new 2012 SEO report and launch a small website that doesn’t grow, you may have problems with high ranking no matter how many experts you hire.
Unlike the natural methods I use and recommend, those self proclaimed SEO experts likely use deceptive methods that may work short term but could eventually get your website blacklisted. Google advises website owners to create content that provides a positive visitor experience. Original quality content will do that.
Read the 5 page illustrated 2012 SEO report (pdf, 226Kb) online or download a copy to read later or share with friends or business associates. View the graphics to see the big difference in traffic between that 10 year old aged website and that 7 month old new custom cms site.
The Catchphrase Secret for Online Success report ends with an invitation for readers to have me evaluate your website with a no cost or obligation review and summary report. Contact me today to request the free review.
Custom cms web design services for small business owners is about more than providing a wow first impression to succeed. A fancy website in flash with talking characters or video with music that launches automatically is what I call “Let me entertain you web design”.
I’m currently working on a custom cms web design project redesign of a recently launched website that blasts music automatically. They’re getting next to zero return traffic. People coming to your website want information, not entertainment. An exception might be a famous recording artist website where you expect music or video on autoplay.
Anyone looking to spend money for a product or service will search the internet for information first while doing comparison shopping before ever placing an order or even contacting you. Music or talking characters in a custom web design for a small business website is a distraction.
Imagine a person at work doing a search on company time who lands on your website, and is met with loud music that their boss overhears. That potential new customer for you could be fired, and I guarantee they will remember your website and their horrible experience.
Your primary web design goal should be attracting potential customers and convince them to buy your product or service.
Next, you want search engines like Google to send you visitors. Information may include nice graphics with descriptive text about what you offer. That text including key words that people may use searching for your product or service is what Google will use to rank your site to determine if you belong near the top in search results.
Getting that traffic from Google requires common sense and natural methods. Do not hire a SEO search engine optimizer and self-proclaimed expert who promises top listing. I know about disappointing results from customers who spent $1000′s to get on Google page one without even $1 in ROI before finding me.
9 out of 10 so called SEO “experts” know just a little more about site optimization and SEO buzz words than the site owner, yet cannot provide evidence to prove similar high ranking results for their site. How can a person expect them to achieve those same promises for a client?
In summary, avoid autoplay audio or video with sound, include key word text that describes your product or service in common terms a visitor is likely to place in the Google search box, and don’t hire an SEO expert if they cannot prove success for their website.
The wSecure plugin is a good choice for hardening WordPress admin security to prevent malicious visitors from your login page. The first defense to protect your admin login credentials is creating a unique user name instead of the default login name “admin”.
Using the term “admin” for a user name gives hackers half the info they need to access your WordPress site, so all they have to do is guess the password. Don’t be cute about your password either. Make it difficult to guess, and don’t have a universal password for every online account you own.
People crying in forums about their website being hacked are usually to blame because of poor security strategy. Check out the top 500 worst passwords of all time to see if yours is listed.
Hacking a site is not about a person going to your site and manually trying to gain access. They’re automated with scripts to input millions of user name and password combos without pressing a key. Pick unique names for your user and password to avoid getting hacked.
The culprits are happy to gain entry to a handful of websites and don’t mind if their robot has to try a million to get access to just a few.
Go beyond picking hard to guess user names and passwords. The wSecure plugin free download creates a secret pathway to the admin login page. It’s hard to disguise the fact you have a WordPress based site. Nearly all use the standard login page at [your domain]/wp-admin/, so getting to the login boxes is easy.
The wSecure plugin allows you to easily “disguise” the path with another level of security, so people going to [your domain]/wp-admin/ login page to attempt to gain access are automatically and instantly redirected to your home page. Follow the link in the previous paragraph to learn more about wSecure, and then consider adding the extra level of protection for hardening WordPress admin security.
This WordPress page comments tutorial explains how to easily set the WordPress 3.x page no comments setting without code edits. Comment settings for blog posts and pages are controlled under the admin menu option for Settings, and then Discussion, yet the only choice is a check box to allow comments, or not.
People want a better choice to allow or not allow WordPress page comments without affecting blog posts.
Custom web design clients with the WordPress platform as a CMS Content Management System usually want comments on blog posts, but not on pages. As WordPress continues to gain popularity as a CMS solution, it doesn’t make sense to have static looking pages like the Home page, About Us, or Contact forms with an option to leave comments.
The ability to add, edit, or delete content without advanced technical skills means “keep it simple” for novice site owners. Currently as of the date of this tutorial, a formal feature request to set the default for pages and posts independently under the setting for discussions remains open 6 months after the request was made.
Easy Solution for WordPress 3.x Website Page Comments Settings
This illustrated tutorial provides an easy 3 step process for setting “no comments” on WordPress 3.x pages while you are actually creating a new page. Note: Illustrations are smaller than actual size.
Click any illustration for an enlarged full size view.
Step One: Click
Click the “Screen Options” in the far upper right of your admin edit screen next to the Help button.
Step Two: Check
Check the box for “Discussion” from the popup section that appears.
Step Three: Uncheck
Uncheck the box for “Allow comments” further down the page just below the page text edit box.
If you overlooked the settings and notice pages have the comment section, return to the page edit in admin and follow these same steps.
Publish your new page and the comment section will not be displayed at the bottom of the published page. If you are doing an edit of selections on an existing page, select the “Update” button instead of “Publish”. You’re done.
Again, this WordPress page comments tutorial is a fast and easy solution as of the date of this post to the current WordPress version 3.3.1. Once the feature request is implemented in a future WordPress update this tutorial may not be needed.
The best solution is WordPress core files that provide a separate allow comments checkbox for posts, and another for pages, so you never have to remember to reset it for new pages in the future.
Maybe the WordPress team will surprise us and make the default setting already unchecked for allow comments on pages!
Learn web design solutions for email in your web design to give a professional first impression, add credibility, and avoid spam. Nearly half the websites for custom web design clients I’ve helped over the last 15 years use a free email service like AOL, GMail, Hotmail, or Yahoo because it is familiar and easy to use.
This tutorial is intended for small business or sole proprietor owners where one person handles email.
My advice is having email links in your web design that send email to info@[your domain] as the primary. Having multiple email addresses on your website like sales@, service@, or even employee names is fine, too.
The key to giving that positive first impression that adds credibility is having an email address that matches your www domain name.
An email address to match your domain is more professional and shows sophistication.
Internet service providers who provide www domain name registration and monthly hosting include email packages. Choices are direct email where you select the prefix like info@ and a password to access email, or forwarding where your email is set up to be sent to another email account.
Whether direct or forwarding, you can have an email link in your web design that matches the domain.
With a direct email account that requires a password, the site owner can then use whatever email program they have on their computer to receive incoming email and reply directly without logging on to a website to view email or reply.
If you only use forwarding, your incoming email arrives automatically to the forwarding address, so if using one of those free email services, you would log on to their website with your existing password to view your inbox. Using Yahoo as an example, the downside is you can only reply with that Yahoo address.
Email replies with an address from a free service are more likely to be sent to your spam folder, or marked as spam by the customer because it is suspicious. Why risk losing a sale because your email reply address was unfamiliar?
Personally, I prefer using both direct and forwarding.
By using info@ as the primary direct email address you only have one email account to set up on your computer. Additional forwarded addresses used as email links in the web design for sales, service, or other departments are forwarded to the info@ automatically.
As a result, when I click the receive button on my computer, emails from any links on my website all arrive in one inbox. Regardless of the incoming prefix, all return replies are sent from that one info@ address, so the matching domain will be familiar, more credible, and less likely to be trashed as spam.
If you never bought premium email software, not to worry. All computers have at least one free email program that you can use. The most common email software packages for free from my experience are Outlook Express or Windows Live Mail.
Your domain, hosting, and email service provider likely has written step by step instructions with settings for creating the email account on your computer. Search their help files or contact them for assistance.
Finally, don’t make the mistake of hard coding your email address in your web design.
Spammer robots surf the internet looking at code and will recognize email addresses to harvest and use, or sell to other spammers. You should cloak your email so it cannot be recognized. View and download this PDF, 4 pages, titled web design email link tutorial to begin protecting your website from spammers.
Having a web design that gives a professional first impression, adds credibility, and avoids spam is not difficult. Work through the advice given to enhance your website email links, and ask for assistance from your service provider if needed to start using an email address that matches your www domain.
Another custom cms website design launched earlier today with a custom cms attorney web design for Komara & Cranton, P.A.
Partners Kenneth Joseph Komara, Esq. and George D. Cranton, Jr., Esq., serve Osceola County and Orange County in Central Florida, and specialize in Family Law, Personal Injury, Criminal Law, Traffic Cases, Juvenile Cases, Forfeitures, or Record Sealing and Expungements.
Komara & Cranton, P.A. has an office in Kissimmee, Florida, one block south of the Osceola County Courthouse.
The initial custom cms web design includes pages for Home, Staff, Individual Profiles, Legal Services, Location, and Legal Links. For now the site navigation includes main horizontal tabs with dropdown menus under the Staff tab with links to individual profiles of each attorney.
This web design was an upgrade to an older site on a different domain with outdated information, and includes a bolder new look appropriate for an attorney or law firm website.
A key advantage of a custom cms web design is the ability to easily add new content for less than the cost of static pages. Advanced features to add easily include video, audio, or contact forms, and the cms website may be expanded in the future with a matching blog if needed.
Wondering if a custom cms, content management system, web design is right for you? Contact us today with any questions.