Importance of Updating Your Website

Our topic this week is the importance of updating your website regularly. What’s the first thing you do before you buy a product or need more information on a company? You check their website. The website is often the first impression of your business. The importance of updating your website can affect many aspects of your business too. Therefore, it needs to be respected at the highest level. 

77 Design Co business card, keyboard, and flash drive.
Keep it simple.

Have you ever been to a company’s website where they don’t have links working? Perhaps it takes you to the wrong page, the pictures aren’t updated, or company information isn’t updated either? Yuck. We don’t want that for you and you shouldn’t want that for yourself. Whether you are doing it on your own, or you have a marketing company doing this for you, here are a few things to make sure you are keeping up to date.  


1. Update the information.

This is probably the most important thing to keep track of. If you have new events you would like people to come to, make sure you are adding them to the site. Hired some awesome new people? Make sure their faces are on there and take off the faces of former employees. If you have new photos of your products, these need to be the center of the website. People are very visual, and they like seeing clean and crisp websites. This also includes a good design that is mobile friendly. 


2. Security.

You do not want your site to get hacked, that is a no no! We won’t go too deep into this, but hackers can use your website as a spam server. This, in the end, will block people from actually viewing your website. There are smarter people than us that can talk to you more about this.  


3. Analytics.

If you have an ecommerce site and you see a huge percentage of people adding to the cart, but nobody going through the checkout, MAYBE something is wrong with your site. This is crucial for your business. Make sure you have a great user experience and continue to make updates. 


4. SEO.

Search Engine Optimization. Optimize the words people are searching in Google, to ultimately find you. This is very important and a necessity for your business. As a result, customers can find you more easily.

 
5. Usability.

Is your website loading slow? That is so painful for the young generations. Certainly, you don’t want to irritate them. So, resize images, update plug ins, or do whatever you need to do to make it quicker. We are a microwave society and need information in just a few seconds. If your website is loading slow, there is a good chance they will just close their browser and move on to a different source of information. Likewise, make sure links are working and sending the user to the right page. For that reason, and many others, user experience is a big deal. Above all keep it simple, easy, or even fun for your customers.

Two business cards on a white background.
Call or email us for help.

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The Importance of a Professional Email

One thing that always befuddles me is when I see a professional business with a @gmail.com, @comcast.net, or some other NOT “@yourbusiness.com” email address.

Side view of laptop with e-mail interface on blurry background. Email marketing concept.
Emails

Customers Expect More.

Customers expect your business to have a domain name and website. An email address like name@yourbusiness.com oozes professionalism. Professional email’s are important. Much more so than a generic email.

Free email services, such as Gmail and Yahoo, are great for personal use. However, when you use a free email account for business purposes, people start to doubt your professionalism and credibility.
For example, say that you are in the process of planning to build a home. You are meeting with several builders. One builder has a name@businessname.com and the other builder has a tony129_builder@gmail.com. As a result, tony129_builder…probably doesn’t get the job. Maybe he’s less expensive. Maybe he’s a better quality builder. Doesn’t matter.
For many people, that can be a first clue that something is wrong. That is to say, they would start to question the integrity of the builder. We all know trust goes a long way in business.
Why doesn’t this builder have his own domain email address? Does he have a website? Is this business legitimate or am I going to be taken? These are some of the questions that you might start to have. Would you take a business with a Hotmail.com email address seriously?
We mean no disrespect here. Maybe, there’s a reason for this. On the other hand, we’re not sure why.
Consequently, a domain, logo, and business card are the minimum requirements for any business. Even new ones. Yourname@yourdomain.com looks a lot better than yourname@comcast.net or yourname@gmail.com. In conclusion, we’d love to hear from you on this. Prove us wrong!
77Design Co logo and business cards.
Analyze. Create. Achieve.

We Want Your Marketing Problems

We want your marketing problems. Yep, you heard that correctly. Bold…but true.

When Rob and I started this venture together, we identified a host of issues that both of us, individually, have ran across over the years that we have been in business. I will not say we’ve seen it all, but we have definitely seen our fair share of problems in the creative/marketing world. Everything from web designers bailing on their clients never to be heard of again, to improperly designed logos, to incorrect photo files delivered to customers, and a whole lot in between. Too many times creatives take the money, create sub par products then disappear or never correct the problems. This is unprofessional and irritating to the clients that have come to us with these issues, but it also annoys the hell out of us too. It’s a black eye on the industry.

Let me also say that this is not completely across the board. There are amazing graphics, photographers, and web creatives out there that do top notch artwork and understand that they need to give clients the highest quality of work and service. We love meeting these people! If you are reading this and feel like you are a highly creative, responsive, and responsible professional in one of these fields…drop us a line. We’d be excited to chat with you and see how we could work together.

If you are a business owner that has fell into one of these traps…we are sorry. If you spent way too much money on something that didn’t work or didn’t work very well, again, we are sorry.  We are also here to help find the solution.

Is your website outdated or not designed to your liking? Do you only have web sized files that a photographer delivered to you and are unable to use any images for print? Are the photos not very well focused or even eye catching? Is your logo pixelating and distorting when you try to add it to a larger sign, or even on the web? Did the person who made your website make it and then never return calls or emails? Not sure what to do with your business social media pages, or how to operate them to maximum efficiency? Was the cost associated with any of your marketing efforts beyond what you wanted to spend? Need a way to get customers to see what your product or service is REALLY all about? Don’t feel that the marketing company you used in the past completely understood your industry and business?

If you answered yes to any of the above or similar questions give us a call. We’d love to help with a free consultation.

We listen. We offer free advice. We dig deep into your business to learn as much as we can about it. We act quickly. We are not your typical marketing service. We have all the tools and know how to fix your marketing problems!

Analyze. Create. Achieve.

 

Let a Fresh Set of Eyes Take a Look

Crossword puzzles are frustrating. You get your first few words with ease, but soon you cannot see any new words at all. Your eyes have adjusted to the random letters and fail to see obvious words. The solution you ask? A fresh pair of eyes, a professional crossword solver. At 77 Design Company in Murrysville, we are your professional crossword solvers.

Okay, maybe not the greatest analogy, but crossword puzzles are a lot like small businesses; someone who runs the business day to day can easily and understandably miss small mistakes. That may cause his or her business to fall short of expectations. At 77 Design, we offer business consultations to help improve those small, but powerful, pieces of your business. We’ll come in and visualize the business with a fresh set of eyes and offer suggestions for improvement. Increasing awareness of employee activity is also another great example of what a business consultation with 77 Design can do for your company.

One example would be when an employee answers the phone. If you do not put an emphasis on phone training your employees…you may want to start! They are the first impression of your business given to a potential customer. It could happen that unbeknownst to you, or your employee, they may answer your business’s phone 70% of the time with a monotone or less than enthusiastic tone. They may answer the other 30% of the time with a happy and excited voice, depending on the day they are having or even the time of day. You could potentially lose 70% of those possible sales because potential customers talked to a more enthusiastic and excited employee at the business across the street who they liked better. Happy employees=happy clientele. Positivity, enthusiasm, optimism, and helpfulness are all contagious within your organization and that spreads to your customer base.

We can not only help to visually market your business better, but also advise you and your staff on best practices that will improve the quality of your brand, employee morale, and its sales.

If you’re unaware that you’re losing these clients, because that 30% of the time is the only thing you see then, 77 Design Company in Murrysville, PA will spot these issues immediately and find solutions that work for your individual business. We are in the business of helping business!

 

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Introducing Our New Project Manager, Gabriella!

Hi! I am Gabriella Hatch, the new Project Manager at 77 Design Company. I wanted to tell you a little bit about myself, where I come from, and hopefully where I am going. I was born and raised 19 years, just outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in a little town called Oakdale. It’s actually “America’s Hometown”, at least that’s what our sign says.
I was surely an “oops” child, my mother was 45 years old with no previous child when I came along. My parent’s previous retirement plan quickly turned into my love of the outrageously expensive equestrian sport and 8
years of college. With that said, my parents’ support has given me motivation and confidence to put my best foot forward in everything I do as well as creating a strong work ethic and a desire to learn.
Recently, I finished my first year at Duquesne University, where I am majoring in Psychology with a minor in political science. For as long as I can remember I have always had a fascination with the brain. When I was young I struggled with panic attacks, controlling the way I breathed in order to control the irrational fear I felt was intriguing to me even as a kid. Therefore when asked as a child what I wanted to be when I grew up, I only had two choices, a
rockstar or a psychologist. The rockstar thing hasn’t worked out for me just yet, so psychology is plan B. As for the future I envision for myself now; my end goal is to receive my PhD. in Psychology, take over my mother’s private christian psychology practice and possibly grow the business with horse therapy. What better way to learn how to run a business and market yourself effectively than to learn from a marketing company itself?
Officially as project manager, my duties include keeping up with social media accounts, billing, research, and everyday administrative duties. More than my official duties, I am thrilled to grow with this company and bring a new perspective to the table.
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Keys to Successfully Market Your Business and Improve Life

Todays blog is all about some things it takes to successfully implement a business marketing plan and better execute personal goals. Hell, the below strategies are what it takes to be successful in any aspect of life!

Ever dealt with an individual or business that DRAAAGGGGS THEIR FEEEET, seems unmotivated, or is unresponsive? If you have ever hired anyone for a job around the house, called for an estimate somewhere, or been in business for more than 30 seconds we are sure that you have. Procrastination is a recipe for failure. It takes work from all parties involved to ensure that things go smoothly no matter what you do and marketing is no different.

One of the things we feel confident in at double 7’s is that responsiveness and communication are at the top of the priority list. You call, we call back. You get us information we need for your strategy, we get it done. You text, we text back. You have a question, we get you an answer. Period. Below are a few things you can start to utilize in your life and business to start trending towards success:

  1. Responsiveness-always call back clients, friends/family, and/or customers definitely within 24 hours, and preferably within an hour or 2.
  2. Problem Resolution-the saying “you can’t please everyone” is true, but its also true that if there is ever a problem, setting up a time to talk things out in a sophisticated and mature manner can be the difference between a pissed off customer and one willing to negotiate and meet in the middle.
  3. Professionalism-this one is a bit broad but always manage to present yourself as an expert in your field. Dress accordingly. Be friendly, optimistic, cordial, and good-natured. Nobody wants to deal with an unpleasant or despondent person that seems lost, obtuse, or frumpish.
  4. Motivation-wake up in the morning with a plan of action. Whether you are working for someone else, or yourself, its a good idea to plan how your day should go instead of just winging it. Even on the worst of days (and we all have them) try to plan something uplifting to you that you enjoy or can look forward to.
  5. Be Organized-even if you don’t have your shit together, pretend you do. We all have lives that often involve hectic work and family schedules but take a few minutes to gather the information you will need for the day and have it at the ready for anyone that may contact you.
  6. Prioritize-this is sometimes difficult but by creating a To-Do list with the number 1-5 things to get done you can save yourself a lot of issues down the road AND start moving ahead, see #’s 1, 2, and 5.

Below are a few Google reviews that we’d like to share. We know first hand that the customers that wrote these reviews follow most of these steps listed above on a daily basis. We couldn’t have created successful marketing strategies for them without their involvement and help. Enjoy your Friday everyone!

Analyze. Create. Achieve.