Ever since Al Gore "invented" the internet, people have been figuring out ways to make money from it. That's part of capitalism and there is nothing wrong with looking for ways to meet the demands of consumers. The internet has provided many ways to generate revenue that we couldn't have imagined before 1994. One of the ways is called "cybersquatting." This is the word that has been coined to describe someone that has acquired a web domain with the hopes that someone will want that domain in the future. It's a fairly inexpensive gamble and can be highly profitable. As the internet has grown the availability of domain names has changed dramatically. There are several important considerations when choosing a domain for your business or organization:
1. Is it memorable? Use the KISS (keep it simple silly) method for best results.
2. Don't get too cute. Using a creative spelling of your name can often work against you as generic searches typically don't include words spelled outside of the norm.
3. Does the name reflect what you do or the product you sell? Unless you have an unlimited budget for marketing to drive traffic to your site, it is usually best to use a domain name that helps Google find you by including one or two keywords that either explain what you sell, or where you sell it.
4. What if the domain I want is already owned by a cybersquatter? Like anything else, everything is negotiable. Your web designer may be able to negotiate a price or suggest alternative domain names that will satisfy your requirements. If you have your heart set on a domain that is already owned, you may have to pony up or keep an eye on the domain to see if the owner loses interest in it.
5. Think about variations of your domain name that you might want to acquire that will forward to your website. Many businesses have multiple domains. Tracking which domains are being used to find you can be useful in determining your overall marketing strategy. Who knows, someone might want to purchase one of your domains in the future!
Are you thinking about moving to Reno, NV? Whether you’re a current or prospective entrepreneur, Reno is a fantastic location to run a business. The city and state boasts all kinds of wonderful opportunities for entrepreneurs. You’ll enjoy robust community support for small businesses, an educated workforce, and no shortage of local resources designed to help local businesses thrive. In a rocky economy, the value of launching a business in a supportive environment cannot be overstated. Below, Waking Girl explores the reasons you should consider setting up shop in Reno.
Availability of Rentals
If you’re not in a position to buy a home, renting is a great alternative, especially in Reno. The city has a variety of rental options at price points suited to various budgets. Look for homes in a neighborhood that fit the needs and wants of your family.
Once you’ve chosen a few suitable areas, view online listings to find properties in your price range. Most online rental sites will allow you to filter your search results based on your desired number of bedrooms and bathrooms, so remember to take advantage of these tools!
Cost of Living
Living in Reno is more expensive than in many other areas of the country. The cost of housing in Reno is significantly above the national average. This cost of living leaves means your business will need to be more competitive on wages to attract talent.
Strong Sense of Community
The people of Reno have a strong sense of community. As a result, residents are eager to support small businesses, and city leaders prioritize policies that support local ventures.
High Quality of Life
People in Reno generally enjoy a high quality of life. This is great for business! Community members with access to cultural opportunities, tasty food options, high-quality education, and beautiful green space make for happier, healthier employees. These well-known attractions draw new residents:
Thanks to the number of reputable colleges nearby, the city workforce is well-educated. Good local colleges create a vast pool of local talent that benefit businesses like yours! Here are a few top-ranked schools in the Reno area:
Proximity to Destination Resorts
Reno is just a short distance from Lake Tahoe. This makes it easy to find high earners and establish valuable business relationships. Plus, your proximity to high income clients will increase your customer base and offer opportunities to scale your business easily.
Your Reno Business Quick-Start Checklist
Are you ready to start a business in Reno? One of the biggest steps is setting up an LLC in Nevada. Once you’ve launched your official business entity, the following are a few organizations that can help you get off the ground:
Reno could be the perfect home base for you and your business. If you’re interested in this beautiful city, start looking for available rentals, review cost of living considerations, and check out all the local resources that are available to support your business. You will thrive as an entrepreneur in Reno!
If you’re searching for help to wake up your business’s website, contact Waking Girl today!
Image via Pixabay
In times of economic downturn, it's important to make sure that your website is up-to-date and working optimally. Making sure that your website looks great, has the most up-to-date content, runs quickly, and offers a great customer experience will help you weather the storm and come out on top.
From the web design experts at Waking Girl Web Design, here are some tips on how to give your website a refresh in preparation for an economic downturn.
Having a website that loads quickly is essential for success in any market condition. Slow sites can lead to frustrated customers who don't have the patience to wait for pages to load or search results to appear. Optimize your site by compressing images and using caching techniques to make sure that there are no delays when customers try to access your site.
Optimize for Mobile
In today's world, mobile optimization is essential. With more people accessing websites from their phones than ever before, you must make sure that your website looks great on all devices. Make sure that all fonts and images scale properly on smaller screens and use media queries if necessary so that everything looks great regardless of device size or type.
Create High-Quality Content
High-quality content can be the difference between success and failure during recessions. Make sure that all of the content on your website is relevant, accurate, and well-written so that customers trust what they are reading when they visit your site. You should also consider adding video content as well as graphics or photos to keep visitors engaged with your content.
Focus on Customer Service
It's important during times of economic hardship for businesses to prioritize customer service above all else so as not to alienate potential customers who may already be feeling stressed due to financial circumstances outside of their control. Investing in customer service technology, such as live chat services or automated responses, will show customers that you care about their needs and are willing to go above and beyond to provide them with helpful solutions.
Learn the Ropes
One of the most effective ways to give your website a refresh is by improving your coding skills. After all, a website that looks aesthetically pleasing but doesn't do what it needs to do will fail to yield results. Once you have your design and branding in order, click here to brush up on changing coding languages, debugging basics, and more. Taking the time to learn coding can make a real difference in how well your website performs both during the downturn and beyond.
If you're not familiar with coding languages such as HTML or CSS, consider investing time into learning these skills so you can enhance your website yourself without paying extra money for professional services. Are you eager to pursue a CompTIA certification to enhance your website to its fullest potential? Investing time in IT courses is an exciting way to take control of your website and make sure it looks exactly how you want it to and does what it’s supposed to.
Work With the Pros
If you don't have the time or desire to learn coding languages yourself, partnering with a professional web designer will be beneficial during an economic downturn for the expert advice they can provide, ranging from how best to optimize your site to increasing your sales and conversions over time. Fill out this questionnaire and let Waking Girl Web Design do the rest!
As the economic landscape shifts, staying ahead of competitors and ensuring a strong online presence is key. For entrepreneurs looking to weather this storm in style, investing time into website optimization can make all the difference: think of loading speed upgrades, mobile compatibility, and comprehensive customer service solutions. Your business will be ready for anything coming its way.
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Maybe you’re excited about your company’s progress in recent months, but you’re curious about how you can push your business forward. Digital transformation might be the answer! By investing in digital innovation, like revamping your company’s website with Waking Girl Web Design, you can achieve and even exceed your business goals. Here’s how to take on digital transformation initiatives for your company.
Focus on Business Process Management
Your processes dictate the way your business runs - and if your processes are not as efficient as they could be, you’ll inevitably waste time and lose out on revenue. But what is business process management? Through business process management, you can automate and optimize processes and move your business forward through digital transformation. By explaining to your employees that this will allow them to tackle projects faster, you’ll be able to gain buy-in from your team. As you create your company’s BPM framework, you’ll need to continue monitoring its effectiveness as time goes on so that you can make changes if necessary.
Choose Tech With Great Support
No matter what kind of technology you’re thinking about investing in, you don’t want to choose programs that lack customer support. After all, if you’re having an issue with your software, you need to be able to get in touch with someone who can help you remedy the problem. Prior to purchasing any new software or hardware, connect with their customer service department and ask a few questions to gauge the effectiveness of their support services.
Explore Cloud Computing
Why are cloud systems so essential for businesses these days? They allow you to store and organize your digital files, and ensure that your team can access the documents they need even when they’re away from the office. Investing in a cloud storage system will definitely make it easier for your team to collaborate on projects. Centrilogic also states that cloud computing can support agile processes, help you cut overall costs, and allow you to scale your business since you can always purchase more storage space if necessary.
Use Helpful Software
If you haven’t already onboarded your team onto project management software and customer relationship management software, now is the time to take care of it! Choosing the right versions of these software can be a complicated decision. It’s important to figure out exactly which functions and features your company will need, so talk to other business owners who run companies of a similar size. Ask them which programs they use, if they would recommend these systems, and which features their team relies on most heavily.
Apply Data Analytics
By using the right software, you can collect valuable data that allows you to make crucial decisions about your company’s future. How can data analytics benefit your business? Treehouse Technology Group states that your data can reveal which processes are actually supporting your business as intended, how your customers behave, where you need to make improvements, and what kinds of actions you can take to change your business for the better.
When your business is run with technology, there is so much potential data that you can collect - and if you’re not already gathering this data, you might be missing out on key knowledge about your company. Therefore, data collection should be of the utmost importance.
Digital transformation is a major undertaking. But embracing digital innovation can help you rack up entrepreneurial accomplishments that you didn’t even realize were possible before. With these tips, you’ll be inspired to start incorporating innovative digital changes into your company!
Are you ready to drive serious business growth? Turn to Waking Girl Web Design for support! Call us today at 775-544-6612 to learn more about what we can do for your company.
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Ultimately, every business owner will want to know the resale value of their business. Even if they intend to pass it on to the next generation, it is important to be able to defend your valuation. Several criteria are needed to come to a reasonable valuation.
If there is real estate involved, and it is assumed that a new owner would continue the use of the property for the same or similar business, a commercial appraisal may be needed. However, lenders have some leeway on whether a fee appraisal is necessary, especially if the real estate value is less than $500,000.
A second consideration is whether the business will be sold as a "going concern" or if a new owner will be starting something new or a re-start of what was once there. A "going concern" will be valued based on historical profitability and how bankable those figures turn out to be. Most business acquisitions will involve financing, so it is important to avoid being too aggressive in write-offs in the immediate year's tax returns, otherwise a prospective buyer will devalue the business to comply with lender requirements. Saving some in taxes could result in even greater losses as it relates to the lowering of net income and thereby lowering the value of your business.
When a prospective buyer learns about your business, they will want to see two things right away. First, they will look at your website as it gives a first impression of how current your business is. Second, they will want to see your financials to determine the viability of the business.
If you're thinking a sale of your business is in the near future, contact Waking Girl Company. They have the resources to update a website and to give guidance on an independent evaluation.
Several of our restaurant clients have had terrible experiences with various food delivery services. Here's an inside look at the reason some of your favorite restaurants are not participating in UBEReats, GrubHub, Postmates, etc., as well as some solutions YOU can use as a consumer.
Dear Delivery Service,
There is a lot more involved in proper delivery of our menu items.
1) The fleet needs to be prepared to immediately exit the premises and drive directly to the diner's location. We have experienced drivers from various services getting comfortable at the bar, and delaying their deliveries.
2) Based on the Yelp reviews we have received from diners who received their meals from delivery services like Postmates, other events are happening between our restaurant and the food's destination. I'm not sure what events this could entail, but it is not conducive to our customers' expectations.
3) The other problem is tipping. Our hard-working staff has no incentive to service delivered meals, and in fact, is often penalized for it. The IRS withholds based on the total sales, not on the total tips. So, a delivered sale will be taxed as if the server is receiving a full tip, but in reality, the tips are often small--as consumers don't understand the extra work involved in packing a to-go meal, and it's being split with the driver.
How Postmates can help:
Our hope is that Postmates will take this feedback seriously and enact immediate changes.
If your system changes, please let us know! We would be happy to reconsider participating in your platform.
Recently, a not for profit organization had a change of Directors. This change was not foreseen as the Director was diagnosed with a terminal condition that quickly took her life. The organization failed to keep a record of passwords and other pertinent information that were necessary to edit their website, check email messages and access bank and credit card information.
The Director probably had all that information saved somewhere, but where? So not only was the organization suddenly scrambling to keep up on the day to day activities the Director had been doing, they also found themselves in the dark as it related to all the technology that had been part of the organization. That is one reason to make sure the organization's website has a maintenance plan with your web designer.
Some businesses try to save a few dollars by having a staff person manage their website. Every owner or board of directors should consider engaging their web company to maintain the site and keep access for edits and changes even if the employee is making some edits. That is like an insurance policy against having an employee quit or otherwise leave the business wondering how to manage the site without them. At the bare minimum, a hosting and maintenance plan should be included with your web company.
When Waking Girl first started, we said YES to every customer who came through our door. Whether the project or client fit us or not, we made it work. Now, with a full clientele, we are limited on how much time we can dedicate to a client who struggles to be successful with us.
You may have just taken a pop quiz to see if you qualify to work with us. If you're curious about the answers we were hoping for, read on! You do not need to see your business and website the way we do. No pressure! :)
Q. A business must have a website to sell products or services:
We believe a business does not need a website to sell products or services. While a website can greatly increase sales and credibility, early deals and relationships can occur offline. Our most successful clients made their early transactions before ever having a website. We have found that many new business owners rely solely on their websites to generate sales. It is important to use multiple avenues to sell products and services, especially at the beginning stages of a business.
Q. The most important purpose of a website is to:
CORRECT: Generate leads and sales
We see business owners fail in their websites because they are more focused on making the website perfectly match their favorite color, than making it bring in $ales. This is a mistake! When clients follow our design direction, they generally see an immediate increase in sales and leads. Why? We have developed a method that make it easy for your customers to reach you!
Impress customers: studies continue to show that impressive websites don't always bring in new customers and sales. We want you to be proud of your website, but we also want your company to be approachable.
Display logo and brand: yes, we want to display your logo and brand. This goal is secondary to generating leads and sales.
Reduce my taxes: yes! Your website is a business expense! We love helping you reduce your tax burden!
Q. A business owner should take advice about web design from:
CORRECT: The web designer they hired
Intuition: can be super helpful. Let us know what your gut is telling you.
Business partner and/or staff: can be super helpful, but can also be distracting. Ask abstract questions of business partners, staff, family early in the process, like, "How do you want to feel when you visit our website? How do you want our new customers to feel when they visit the website?" Avoid specifics about design elements, colors, etc.
Articles: can be super helpful, but can also come across like you're micro-managing your web design team.
Q. A website is like a car and needs regular refueling and maintenance.
We believe a website is like a car and needs regular refueling and maintenance. Absolutely, yes! The trends of the web are changing faster than the rules of the road--and a website needs to be able to keep up. We utilize platforms and strategies that allow for easy updates and full site overhauls as the technological demands of a website, company and The Internet change.
Q. A business will fail if any piece of it is not running perfectly at all times.
We believe that growing companies do have a few failing pieces at any given time. Only the companies that have become stagnant have perfection in all areas of the business. To grow requires some trial and error. We access the knowledge base of hundreds of business owners to mitigate the risk of failure for our clients and decrease the time it takes to correct an error. We love working with growing businesses.
Q. My website budget is:
$1000/year to $1000/month
Programs also available for $1000/week website marketing budgets!
We believe it's important to have a budget for your website. While it doesn't need to be a major expenditure, a small, monthly amount of at least $100 can really help a website keep up with the changes in technology.
We strive to work with companies that we can help, by taking "web presence" off the plate of the CEO. We are a full-service agency and can handle everything from website rebuilds to maintenance to SEO and Facebook presence.
Do you qualify? We would love to hear more about your website--what's working for you now, what's not working; what's frustrating, and what about Waking Girl prompted you to reach out?
You've probably got some questions about how to get into your website, who controls your website, and who owns your website. Please review the information below to clarify the jargon and get answers!
Domain, Website, Hosting
There are three pieces to your website: the domain, the website and the hosting. I relate these to a house. The website is the house, the hosting is the property that the house sits on, and the domain is your postal address.
These components work together to bring you your website. Each of these components can be taken apart, moved and matched up with other components to bring you a new website, a new domain, or a new host.
Do I own my domain name? Yes.
Where is my domain name? In Waking Girl's GoDaddy account.
Can I access my domain name? Generally no. For the protection of our clients we cannot give free-for-all access to our account. We may be able to assign access to specific services for unique cases.
Can I move my domain name? Yes. Just set up your own GoDaddy account and email the Username and Email address, and we'll initiate an Account Change.
What will happen if I move my domain name? Services may be disrupted. We charge $100/hour to reinstate any services as a result of a requested domain Account Change.
Do I have to pay for my domain name? Yes. We either include the cost of your domain with your hosting or maintenance plan or charge $15/year for just a domain.
Why is it set up this way?
We started holding onto domain names because:
What would it cost for me to manage my own domain name?
You will need to pay renewal fees to GoDaddy which vary from $10-$15/year. If your domain expires there is a short grace period in which you may retrieve the domain name for an additional $80. Beyond the grace period your domain may be selected to go to auction, at which time the domain could run from $400 to $4000, and up.
WEBSITE: that pretty thing with your logo, text, pictures and buttons!
Do I own my website? Yes.
Where is my website? In one of Waking Girl's Weebly accounts.
Can I access my website? Yes. Use your Weebly log-in credentials to access the website and make edits or see stats. Don't have these? Please contact us and ask for your Weebly log-in info.
Can I move my website? Yes. We can send you a compressed folder of your website files, or we can move your website to a new Weebly account. Just send us an email address that has never been associated with a Weebly account and a request to move your website.
What will happen if I move my website? Services may be disrupted. Many features will only work on the Weebly platform. Ecommerce features and products will not transfer to a new Weebly account.
Do I have to pay for my website? Yes, you have to pay for the initial build of your website. After that--it belongs to you!
Why is it set up this way?
Weebly allows us to build websites quickly and reliably. Weebly allows us to build and still give access to clients to make changes.
What would it cost for me to manage my own website?
It's free! You may also hire another web designer or an intern or your favorite office manager to handle your website updates for you.
HOSTING: the online storage place where your website files live.
Do I own my hosting? No.
Where is my hosting? In Weebly's secure servers.
Can I access my hosting? Yes. Use your Weebly log-in credentials to access the hosting and make edits or see stats. Don't have these? Please email and ask for your Weebly log-in info.
Can I move my hosting? No, but you may move your website to a new Weebly account. Just send us an email address that has never been associated with a Weebly account and a request to move your website.
Can I move my hosting to a traditional server? Not easily. You may attempt to upload your exported website files to a traditional server, but it will require advanced coding to make the website fully functional, and we cannot guarantee all functions will work.
What will happen if I move to a new host? Services may be disrupted. Many features will only work on the Weebly platform. Ecommerce features and products will not transfer to a new Weebly account.
Do I have to pay for my hosting? Yes, Waking Girl charges $14/month for hosting. This fee is included if you're on a Maintenance Plan.
Why is it set up this way?
We work on the Weebly host because it is integrated with a building platform that allows us to build quickly and reliably. Going back to our home metaphor, Weebly is like the mother of all gated communities, with a pool and club house and 24/7 security services.
What would it cost for me to manage my own website?
Weebly's Pro Service runs $9.83/month, which is payable 6 months in advance. Additional fees may apply for eCommerce and Membership services.
I'm nervous about the whereabouts of my website, but want to keep working with Waking Girl.
For some business owners full control makes the most sense. Full control generally costs you more money, but a restful sleep is well worth it! To move everything into your full control please do the following:
Please understand that additional fees will apply for further maintenance to your website. It does take extra time to access websites and domains outside of the Waking Girl accounts.
I'm tired of Waking Girl and want to work with someone else.
Hey! Thanks for being honest! :) We have a limited number of Weebly accounts and only want very happy clients using our accounts. Please send the information above so we can get you out!
We look forward to assisting you! Let us know how we can help!