Just somewhere I waffle
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Tradesmen Gallery - Free Tradesmen Advertising
If there is one bit of advice when talking to local tradesmen about websites it's, get a nice photo of yourself stood next to your van on your home page or about page.
It's always nice to see what a tradesman looks/dresses like and seeing what he/she drives before having them around to your home to provide a quote.
With this in mind I have created a new section on UK Small Business Directory which allows tradesmen to submit a photo of themselves stood next to their van (or their van on its own) and not only do they features in our Tradesmen Gallery, they also receive a free upgraded listing in the main directory.
Further information can be found here - Tradesmen Gallery
I said something similar back at the start of 2015 but I really are coming to the conclusion now that unless you are building website that you are handing over to people who don't have much of a clue, building fancy websites, ecommerce websites or building websites with 20 plus page, you may as well go back to creating little static sites rather than Wordpress sites.
No Wordpress installations, no databases, no plugin updates, no Wordpress updates to worry about.
The only real disadvantage I see is you might have to open up your FTP client every now and then.
Future proof by using directories, use header and footer includes and the editing is no more time consuming than using Wordpress with the added benefit of far more control.
All I need now is a product/service/subject to build a site for
Following on from my post last week about struggling to find any inspiration at the moment - http://www.ukbusinessforums.co.uk/xfa-blog-entry/how-do-you-deal-with-lack-of-inspiration.3307/ I suddenly had the idea to build a little dummy ecommerce website.
With the idea in place I now had to decide on what to putt in it then inspiration struck - Bunnykins
The beauty of using Bunnykins is they are all about the same size and I have about 50 in my display cabinet which makes them easy to photograph.
I didn't want yo arse around too much taking quality photos, so just set the iPad to square mode and took about 30 photos plus a couple of the Bunnykins Oompah Band to use as a header.
I transferred them to my PC, resized them all to 500 square and started building the site.
I didn't particularly want a shop home page so just redirected that to a static page and created one category named Rare Bunnykins
I just added 16 products and gave each one 4 Up-Sells, I couldn't be bothered writing descriptions as it's just a dummy site, but did add a view shopping cart link to the header which only displays when a product is in the basket.
Quite fun to do, just hope nobody buys one of my Bunnykins though
It was after I built it that I started thinking I ought to start building real sites for real products, but ideally as me not as my business. hence this question in the forum - http://www.ukbusinessforums.co.uk/threads/doing-other-business-things-personally.360372/
One of the joys of working from home is setting up bird feeding stations just outside the office window and watching all the birds feeding.
I set up various different feeding stations at the start of the year and it was lovely to see the tits, robins, sparrows, finches and even the occasional woodpecker feeding from the various things I had set up.
It was nice to see the parents feeding the young, teaching them to fly, watching them grow up, etc.
How do they reward me for this? - The bastards have eaten all my cherries
The last few weeks I've been updating, tidying up and setting up lots of my little sites.
This is all very well but in truth most of the sites are about nothing
The problem is; I don't sell anything, don't really provide a service and lead generation just bugs me at times.
This has effectively meant lots of tinkering, lots of experimenting with themes, lots of 4 - 5 page websites set up, but then zilch.
I just can't decide what to build sites about and have completely lost my inspiration.
It's got to the stage where I am doing stuff for other people for free just because they have nice content I can use.
How do others deal with lack of inspiration and not having content to give you that inspiration?
Which is best?
Does it make any difference?
Obviously it does here, but what about on a normal website?
For some time now upgraded listings have appeared above free listings in the UK Small Business Directory but it wasn't really that obvious.
I've now had a bit of a revamp and colour coded the upgraded listings so they now not only appear above free listings but also stand out more.
My Caterers Directory section is a good example with 2 gold listings at the top, followed by 7 Silver listings with the free listings then randomly listed below.
I may even provide the option of including an image/logo with upgraded listings, but haven't really decided yet.
Do you provide SEO services to small businesses?
Do you set up and optimise Google Local Listing?
Do you still do directory submission?
When you join the UK Small Business Directory Partner Programme the cost of a Gold Upgraded listing is reduced from £30.00 to £20.00.
Gold upgraded listings include JSON Mark-up to help improve NAP citations and are styled to compliment the business website.
Premier partners receive their own unique registration page, have all listings they submit tagged to them and have a special page on the UK Small Business Directory which displays their listings.
See an example of a Partners Page by Clicking Here
Find out more about the UKSBD Partner Programme and sign up for free by Clicking Here
One of my 1st websites wheelchair-ramps.co.uk is over 13 years old now.
There's been a lot of changes in that time, but the main part of the site still consists of about 20 static HTML pages.
In this day and age where everything seems to be done with Content Management Systems it seems to be getting rarer and rarer to just hand code static sites, but if you're the sort of person that hand codes and uploads via FTP going back to basics and constructing sites this way can still make sense.
Of course CMS's are great if you want to regularly add or update content and I use Wordpress for news pages, feeder pages, filler pages and for the Disability Directory but the main core of the site is still those 20 static pages.
Something I tend to do now is a sort of combination of static pages and CMS pages in that I create very basic page templates, individual static hand coded headers and footers in Wordpress and then use Wordpress for the content area.
By doing it this way I strip out all the extra Wordpress stuff I don't want and use different headers and footers throughout the site.
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I see people saying it all the time when the subject of Apps is raised;
"What's the point of small businesses having Apps?"
You then usually read;
"Why not just have a mobile responsive website instead?"
The thing is, Apps shouldn't be seen as alternatives to mobile responsive websites, but add-ons to websites instead.
It's a bit like saying, why have a facebook page, why have a Twitter page, why have a Google+ page?
OK, so these may all be free, but when you add up all the time you take setting them up, the time maintaining them, etc. and then multiply this time by your going rate, the price of a small App not look that bad anymore.
With Mobile completely taking over from desktop, more storage space on mobile devices, instant download availability of Apps, surely it wont be long when saying "Why not just have a mobile responsive website instead?" or "What's the point of small businesses having Apps?" sounds as silly as "why have a Twitter account", "Why have a facebook page", "why have a Google+ page"
There was a time when all my sites were built out simple static HTML pages.
My big sites are obviously database driven and sites I update a lot and constantly add content to are Wordpress driven.
Recently though, I've noticed I'm building little 7 or 8 page sites which once set up are forgotten about in Wordpress too when really there is little point.
You then get the hassle of having to keep Worpress updated, having to rely on a database, having to remember login details, etc.
I've decided Worpress has just made me lazy and the next few sites I build will be simple static sites.
Ok, so technically it aligned right but let's not split hairs over #lefthandersday at UK Small Business Directory
Due to the continued abuse of the free submission form on UK Small Business Directory I recently moved it to a hidden area.
This has resulted in;
New entries since making business registration page email invite only = down 90%
Time spent monitoring business directory = down 90%
Impressions = up 48%
Clicks = up 38%
AdSense earnings = up 64%
I think I'll keep it email invite only from now on
To add a free listing to UK Small Business Directory you now have to register 1st via http://www.uksmallbusinessdirectory.co.uk/advertising/2014.asp which will then provide details of how to add your free business listing.
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