What You Might Not Know About the 4th of July

Posted on June 28, 2018 by Kendall Jarboe

What_You_Might_Not_Know_About_the_4th_of_JulyFreedom, fireworks, and hotdogs all come to mind when thinking about the 4th of July. Each year, 80% of United States citizens attend a BBQ, picnic, or cookout to celebrate Independence Day, and almost just as many gather together with their family.  With this festive holiday right around the corner, be sure to educate yourself and impress your friends with some facts you might not have known about the 4th of July.

Misconception Inception

To start off, let’s get something straight with this holiday’s origin. When you ask someone why the 4th of July is celebrated, they might describe it as the birth of the United States’ freedom which is signified by the signing of the Declaration of Independence. While this is a commonly accepted notion, it is actually false. In a letter to his wife on July 3, 1776, John Adams revealed that he wished for America’s independence to be celebrated on the 2nd of July. Here’s why:

The 4th of July actually denotes the adoption of the Declaration of Independence by the Second Continental Congress and not the signing of it. Congress declared freedom from Great Britain on July 2, 1776. They debated for the next two days over the wording, revisions, and edits to the Declaration of Independence. The main author of this document, which was intended to be the proclamation of freedom to the public, was Thomas Jefferson. It was not until August 2, 1776 that most of the delegates signed the document, and two delegates never signed at all.

Monumental Celebrations

You won’t be the only one grilling hot dogs this year, on the 4th of July alone, it has been reported that Americans eat 150 million hot dogs. That is enough hot dogs to stretch from Washington D.C. to Los Angeles more than five times. Hamburgers, watermelons, and pies are also popular (and delicious!) food items that are found on the dinner table during the holiday. Food isn’t the only way to celebrate: more than 14,000 firework displays occur across the nation every year. Once the sun goes down, Americans like to light up the sky with colorful and loud explosions.

While there’s no celebrations quite like ones you will find in the U.S., there are other countries around the world that celebrate the United States’ Independence Day. From Norway to China and France to Australia, tourists and residents can be sure to find parties equipped with BBQ and the Red, White, and Blue.

No matter where in the world you might be celebrating from this 4th of July, you now have some festive trivia to share with your loved ones. Be sure to stay safe, have fun, and make sure to grab a hot dog. Although, at the rate they are being consumed in the United States, you might want to act fast!

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5 Basic Steps to Utilizing Hootsuite

Posted on June 21, 2018 by Kendall Jarboe

5_Basic_Steps_to_Utilizing Hootsuite

For some business owners, establishing a consistent social media presence seems like an impossible task. How do social-media savvy companies stay up-to-date on all of their posts, while still running their business? The answer: they don’t. Well, not all on their own, at least. Hootsuite is a social media management tool that keeps track of your social media platforms, what you want to post, and will post it for you whenever you want. If you’re brand new to Hootsuite, or if you’ve had it for years but feel like you’re not getting your money’s worth, here are five basic steps to use this platform for its maximum potential.

Step #1: Organize your Dashboard.

If your dashboard gives you anxiety when you look at it, then it’s probably because you aren’t organizing your streams in a sensible way. Hootsuite provides totally customizable dashboards, so set up for what works best for you. For a clean look, order the tabs according to your social media platforms. Instead of trying to keep all of your networks on one tab, make multiple tabs for your accounts. Just click on Streams in the navigation menu and click the add tab button in the tabs row at the top. Once you have your new tab, you can add the respective social network.

Step #2: Set up Bulk Message Uploads.

Depending on your plan, you may qualify for Bulk Message Scheduling. This feature, located in the Publisher tab, allows you to upload a file from your computer with all of the posts you want to make, their captions, and when you want them posted. Doing this will save you a lot of time because, instead of having to compose each post individually, you can use just one file to schedule and upload them all at once.

Step #3: Try AutoSchedule.

Do you find yourself searching for something to post and choosing a random time to post it? AutoSchedule is another helpful feature that schedules posts for your account based on your settings, currently existing content, and the ideal timing for your audience. When you compose a message and click on Scheduling, you’ll see the option to turn on AutoSchedule. Adjust the settings to your preferences and prepare for automatic posts customized to you.

Step #4: Take a Course at Hootsuite Academy.

As a resource for Hootsuite users, Hootsuite Academy offers training courses for those looking to develop themselves personally and professionally. There are free and paid courses available. You can learn more about how to use the Hootsuite platform itself, or you could grow your knowledge of social media marketing. They’ve even partnered with Syracuse University to offer Advanced Social Media Strategy Certification.

Step #5: Download the Hootsuite Mobile App.

Already headed home from work and you can’t remember if you scheduled tomorrow’s posts? For iOS and Android devices, Hootsuite has an app that can do almost everything your desktop can: add new streams, post on multiple platforms at once, schedule posts for later, manage settings, respond to direct messages, and more. If you add a new item in the mobile app, it will automatically sync onto your desktop’s Hootsuite dashboard.

Always remember: there’s no point in attracting customers through social media only to have your website turn them away. Here at WebRevelation, we recognize that social media is simply a means to get potential clients to your website and your product. If your social media game is strong but your website is suffering, or you need help with online marketing, contact us today for a free consultation.

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How to Know That You Need a New Website

Posted on June 14, 2018 by Kendall Jarboe

how-to-know-that-you-need-a-new-websiteEvery business owner knows that trends, products, clients, and styles are always changing. To keep up with the times, your website should adapt to these changes. While websites constantly require minor upkeep, how do you know if your website needs a total makeover? Ask yourself the following five questions. If you answer “no” to any of them, then you probably need to revamp your website

Is your website is mobile friendly?

Just because your site looks fabulous on the desktop does not automatically mean users can painlessly maneuver it on their smartphones. Websites that haven’t joined the mobile-friendly movement are hurting themselves. The number of mobile users has been on a steady incline over the years. How do you know if your website is responsive to mobile devices? The test is simple: pull out your phone and explore your site. If images or information are squished together, or certain features don’t even work, then your site is not mobile friendly. 

Is your website traffic growing?

When it comes to your website, it should help build your clientele, not harm it. Consistently check your website traffic analytics. If the growth of your company has plateaued, or worse, declined, then your website needs to be revitalized. Every feature on your website should be intentional. If it’s not, that means you’re wasting precious space that could be used to expand your reach. 

Is your website easy to use?

This question is for both you and your users. Can your users seamlessly navigate your site? Can you customize your website without having to spend hours watching video demonstrations just to reformat an image? The bottom line: if your website is difficult to use, then people won’t spend time on it. If your website is difficult to edit, then you won’t want to improve it. 

Does your website accurately represent your brand?

It’s important for every business to maintain consistency, even on their websites. If you are even slightly embarrassed by your out-of-date website, you need a new one. You wouldn’t let your employees misrepresent the values of your company, so why would you permit your website to do so? Innovative and forward-thinking brands should not associate with websites that look like they are from the prehistoric era. 

Are you completely happy with your website?

The thing is, there is no excuse to not be totally proud of your website. If you don’t feel comfortable showing your site to friends and family, that’s a red flag. Do you sometimes cringe when you compare your website to your competitors? Do you secretly hope that your site doesn’t steer customers away from your product? If so, you absolutely need a new website. 

If you know that your website needs a transformation or some minor tweaks, contact WebRevelation today for a free consultation. We offer and a variety of services to make your website mobile friendly, to increase traffic, to make it easy for you and your clients to use, and to represent your mission. You deserve to be proud of your website, so contact us today

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How to Get Traffic to Your Brand New Website

Posted on June 7, 2018 by Julie Short

How-to-Get-Traffic-to-Your-Brand-New-WebsiteOne of the most exciting things about launching a new business is putting your brand-new website online. However, one of the most frustrating things about putting a fresh web presence on the internet is that it can take a while for customers to notice.

Attracting web visits can be a challenge for any business. For one with no history or name recognition, though, it can seem impossible to get buyers to find the site and refer their friends.

Today, we want to share a handful of quick and easy tips you can use to get your brand-new website off to a flying start. Here is how you can get the traffic you need, and more importantly, keep it coming…

Start With an Email Blast

Your first source of website traffic will probably come from people who already know you and are excited for the launch of your new business. Chances are you won’t have to send these folks an email to alert them about your new venture, but you should do so anyway (assuming you have their opt-in permission). Not only will it remind them that you're open for customers, but they may forward your message and generate referrals from their friends and colleagues.

Run a Few Paid Ads

Some entrepreneurs dislike the idea of using paid search and social media ads, particularly at a time when marketing budgets might be low. However, you can use advertising on Facebook and Google to narrow in on your perfect customers – whether you want to sort them by location, interest, demographics, or other factors – greatly increasing your odds of making those all-important first few sales. Online advertising can be a great way to kickstart your sales and brand recognition efforts.

Boost Your Content on Social Media

It’s not a bad idea to spend a few dollars boosting your content updates and email newsletters on Facebook, given that you can often reach thousands of buyers for less than you would spend on a cup of coffee. That’s a particularly attractive proposition for new businesses that don’t have much in the way of existing web traffic or awareness within a target market. Consider boosting your content with existing fans and others who are interested in the same types of products and services.

Borrow a Targeted List

You might not have any existing web traffic, but others in your industry probably do. It goes without saying that your competitors are going to send people your way, but what about colleagues in related fields? By guest posting to their blogs, or providing some kind of special offer they can promote through their email newsletter and social media profiles, you might be able to reach thousands of potential customers or clients who might not have otherwise heard of you.

Create Repeat Visits

You can use the tips we have given you so far to bring first-time visitors to your website. Don’t forget, though, that one of your important goals is to keep them coming back again and again. You can do that by having them sign up for an email newsletter, receive coupons through social media, or giving them some sort of instant and downloadable offer. Whatever method you choose, try to give them a reason to not only return to your website soon, but to tell their friends and contacts to do the same.

Looking to launch a brand-new website and see your business grow quickly? Talk to the WebRevelation creative team to learn more about our web design and online marketing services today!

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5 Ways to Maintain Your Business Website

Posted on June 5, 2018 by Julie Short

5-Ways-To-Maintain-Your-Business-WebsiteAny major purchase you make for your business is going to require a bit of ongoing maintenance. You wouldn’t invest in a building or vehicle with the expectation that you could simply forget about it, so why do so many business owners overlook their websites?

Luckily, it doesn’t take a lot to keep your web presence running smoothly. However, there are a few things you’ll have to do if you want to get the most from the investment of time and money you put into getting it online the first place.

Here are five important ways you can maintain your business website and improve your return on investment…

#1 Review and Update Your Content Periodically

You should make a point of reading through your website once in a while and ensuring the content on your pages is still accurate. It’s surprisingly easy to let things like calendars, employee profiles, and product pages become outdated. When that happens, customers aren’t getting accurate information about your company, which can lead to misunderstandings and lost sales later.

#2 Make Additions to Your Business Website

As your business grows, your website should grow right along with it. You might add new pages for new locations or product groups. Or, you could put in additional employee bios as your team grows. You could also grow your site with new articles and reports that improve your credibility and bring fresh search traffic. You could even consider adding plugins that give customers and vendors the features they’ve been asking for. The important thing is that your website keeps growing month after month.

#3 Update Your Plug-ins and CMS

Most businesses rely on a content management system and a series of plug-ins to not only build a profitable business website, but keep adding new features over time. It’s important that these be updated frequently so they remain stable and secure. Additionally, you might think about replacing old plug-ins with newer ones, which can have the effect of speeding up your website while making it more valuable to users.

#4 Review Your Web Analytics Monthly

When you dig into your web analytics package it’s like you’re checking the gauges and indicators on your business website. If there is anything that might disrupt the flow of traffic to your pages, or your ability to generate conversions, it’s better to know about that sooner rather than later. Additionally, you can use the statistics from your website to optimize your marketing campaigns in addition to troubleshooting any underlying problems.

#5 Get Regular Website Audits

A website audit is simply a deep dive into the HTML beneath your layout. A web designer can use the number of tools to test things like speed, content strength, link quality, and other factors to see whether your website is visible and usable to customers. These kinds of checkups should be performed regularly (at least once a year) so you can stop any minor issues from becoming costly problems later.

Need Better Web Design or Online Marketing Advice?

Business owners and executives throughout San Antonio and Oklahoma City know the WebRevelation team because we deliver quality, service, and results. If you are thinking about taking your business to the next level, now might be the perfect time to contact us for a free consultation!

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How Smart Web Programming Helps the Bottom Line

Posted on May 31, 2018 by Julie Short

How Smart Web Programming Helps the Bottom LineThere is a common misconception within the business world that web programming – also known as custom web development – is only for huge businesses with enormous budgets. However, that’s far from the truth. In fact, small and medium-sized businesses often have the most to gain from working with a talented programming team.

In order to explain why this is the case, we usually give some concrete examples relating to e-commerce, data automation, etc. In today’s post, though, we want to take things in another direction. To show you why smart web programming helps the bottom line, let’s look at three different sides of your business that can be improved with the right custom software…

Web Programming Helps With Sales and Marketing

There are dozens of ways you can increase your revenue using custom web applications. You could automate data collection from prospects, customize your marketing campaigns at a regional or individual level, and even create add-on e-commerce opportunities with apps that upsell.

Whether you serve customers in a retail, wholesale, or business-to-business setting, there are probably parts of your website that could be improved with custom functionality. It’s amazing what a small investment of time and money in web development can bring you in terms of new sales opportunities.

You Can Use Web Programming to Keep and Serve Customers

It’s almost always more cost-effective to keep your current customers, or sell more to them, than it is to spend money finding new buyers. Luckily, this is another area where you can get more from web programming.

Imagine being able to automate things like repeat orders, shipment tracking, and customer returns. Or, think about what it would be like to have detailed information on every interaction with a buyer at your fingertips, and to be able to make decisions based on those insights. That’s the power of smart web programming, and how you can use it to improve customer retention and repeat sales.

Custom Web Development Helps You Manage Employees and Vendors

This is an area of web development a lot of business owners and executives tend to overlook. That’s because most of them are focused on adding new features that increase sales, even though they could save time and cut costs by managing employees and vendors more efficiently.

Using the right custom software you can schedule teams, manage large projects, and even allow for real-time collaboration between different groups or locations. You can also store documents, manage payroll and benefits, and identify work that is being duplicated. Those are all great ways to trim a bit of fat from your bottom line and make your business run leaner and meaner.

Want to Learn More About Web Programming?

It’s one thing to learn about the benefits of web programming, and another to realize it could help you reach the business goals you have in place. Why not contact the development team at WebRevelation today and let us show you how we can use the right tools and expertise to boost sales, lower customer service costs, and make it easier to manage your team?

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